Quarantine Q&A: Update (Part 9)

I can’t believe how many of these I’ve done now! Now that it’s getting colder and we’re being forced indoors, it’s more important than ever to have content and activities stockpiled so we don’t go crazy. For more ideas, check out: Part 8, Part 7, Part 6, Part 5, Part 4, Part 3, Part 2, and Part 1.


  • Cooking/Recipes:
    • Sauces – After one use, the fancy food processor we got for our wedding broke. I’m thinking it was too much for the power outlet (?) so I replaced it with something smaller and less expensive. I’m still mourning our original one, but it’s time to move on and I’m very excited to put the new lil guy to good use. I’m planning to make a chimichurri and also have my eye on this broccoli cream pesto.
    • Parsnips for dessert sounds super strange, but I can’t help thinking that this 3-ingredient recipe looks sooooo good.
  • Other Activities:
    • Whiled – This new brand is basically a product-driven manifestation of the Girls Night In brand (a favorite newsletter and community). It’s all about staying home and enjoying the simple pleasures. They just launched with a few products that are perfect for whiling away the time during a pandemic (and beyond).
    • And another from the Girls Night In crew…I just joined The Lounge.
    • Writing Prompts: I loved discovering this treasure trove of writing prompts to inspire me when I’m feeling blocked.


  • Books:
    • My Mom introduced me to Agatha Christie at a young age and I feel just as the author of this piece does. Fall into Christie’s world by running through this list of her essential work.
    • I went on a crazy book buying spree…like 7 books. I started with Sex & Vanity because after a few heavy novels, I was ready for something FUN and it delivered. I didn’t pick it up the minute it came out because, as someone who pre-ordered all the Crazy Rich Asians books, I was worried I’d be disappointed. Thankfully, I was not.
  • Movies:
    • Holidate – Our house generally likes to wait til after Thanksgiving to watch the major holiday movies, but I don’t mind starting the cheesy ones a bit early and this was a fun one that I watched the moment it dropped on Netflix.
    • Borat 2 – Sacha Baron Cohen may be a genius. This is hilarious (and a bit scary because of how many stupid people it exposes).
    • Trial of Chicago 7 – Since it was so before my time, I never thought much about the counterculture and Vietnam protest so I enjoyed learning a bit more about the 1969 trial of seven people charged with conspiracy after protesting at the 1968 Democratic National Convention.
    • DOC NYC – This documentary film festival was held recently and I bookmarked a bunch of the movies/shorts. A few were already on my list, but mostly this just made the list much much longer. Currently hoping to watch: 9/11 Kids, Abortion Hotline, This Is Lisa, Belushi, Calendar Girl, Chasing Childhood, Crazy, Not Insane, and A Crime on The Bayou, Boys State, Hunger Ward, Jacinta, The Seeker, Songs of Repression, .
    • On The Rocks – If you’re fan of Sofia Coppola’s dry humor and father/daughter relationship studies, you’ll enjoy this one, in which Rashida Jones suspects her husband of having an affair and sets out with her father, Bill Murray, to confirm it.
  • TV:
    • Comedy Store – The Comedy Store in LA is an iconic breeding ground for the country’s best comedians. Each episode in this 5 part docuseries on Showtime focuses on a different era in the club’s history.
    • The Queen’s Gambit – This is a great 7 episode miniseries about a teen chess prodigy. Sounds boring, but it’s not at all. Beth, an orphan, picks up chess after watching the janitor play once. She also picks up a nice habit for tranquilizers. She later enters an…interesting…adoption arrangement and starts taking the chess world by storm as she barely holds herself together. The first episode is good, but then it really picks up. Also, the 1960s fashion and set design is amazing.
    • The Undoing – Over the course of 7 days, 5 different people recommended this HBO Max show to me. I’m dying to start it, but my beau isn’t sure if he’s ready to start something new. If he doesn’t make up his mind by the end of this weekend, I’m leaving him in the dust.
    • Dash & Lily – I love holiday content; I love rom-coms; I love seeing iconic NYC spots on screen. This quick series delivers all those things. 17-year-old Lily is a little weird – a bit of an eclectic loner who’s ready to branch out. She wants to protect herself while she seeks love so she hides a notebook of challenges in a bookstore for a worthy suitor to find. Dash, a bookish rich kid, is lucky enough to stumble upon it and the 8 episodes show the two teen lovebirds circling each other. It’s adorable and I love seeing so many of my favorite spots. The Strand, in particular, plays a big role (and we all know that’s my happy place!), but we also get to see great spots like McSorley’s, the Union Square Holiday Market, and The Morgan Library.
  • Podcasts:
    • Daily French Pod – I can feel my French slipping away and I thought podcasts would be a good way to get back in the game. This one is good because the host simply reads a mini paragraph (just a few sentences – each episode is under 5 minutes) then breaks down the translation, mostly in French. It feels more immersion style, which I always think is best. I’ll probably soon add something more technical that focuses on verbs/conjugations soon, but this is a great start.
    • Giggly Squad – Paige and Hannah are the fan favorites of Summer House, I think because they seem to keep it real and are just funny ladies without actually being comedians. I like listening to them chat things out on their new podcast and really like that they maintain a bit of structure for a chat show.
    • We Met at Acme – Lindsey Metselaar doles out dating advice for millennials. I’m not dating, but I still find it very interesting, I think because I, too, am a millennial and the stories that come up in these interviews definitely strike a chord. Warning: There’s a lot of wealthy basic white girl stuff here. I’ve only listened to a few episodes so far, but many of the guests are the kinds of people who spend a lot of time in the Hamptons, if that makes sense. That said, I still like the advice and conversation.
    • Tiny Victories – I love the idea that sometimes it’s about the small wins. I may not be the one to find a COVID cure but, dangit, I actually got out of bed and made it to the gym and that should be celebrated. Episodes on this new show are just 15 minutes